Present: Vicky Falconer, John Gilby, Sandy Leitch, Julie Howell, Caroline Lloyd, Mary Nixon, John Tuck.
1. Apologies for absence:
Angus Brown, Nick Bevan, Julie Brittain, Rosemary Lynch, Ann Murphy, Pete Ryan
2. Minutes of the last meeting, and review of actions:
The minutes from September 2010 were accepted as an accurate record.
Pete Ryan (PR) and Vicky Falconer (VF) were thanked for work on Annual Report. Action: SL to forward report to SCONUL list; VF and SL to draw up list of additional recipients to send the report to in January.
3. Chair’s report:
3.1 Space Charging (reserved business)
John Tuck (JT) updated the Steering Group (SG) on progress. It was agreed that JT would send a holding reply, confirming that the M25 Steering Group had discussed the matter. JT will circulate a note to the SG and communicate response to the LSE. Action: JT to get in touch with LSE regarding SG response to space charging proposal.
Caroline Lloyd (CL) briefed the SG on some preliminary thoughts on the ways in which the space charge might be met. Action: CL to model initial figures.
4. Treasurer’s Report:
CL presented the Trustees Report and M25 Consortium of Academic Libraries unaudited accounts to the Steering Group for approval. The report was approved by the Steering Group and signed at the meeting. CL advised that the signed copies will be sent to Kingston Smith KS, from where they will be submitted to Companies House and the Charities Commission, and then presented to members at AGM.
CL advised that subscriptions were processed this year very promptly, and the majority of payments had been received, with only two outstanding. Action: CL/VF check governance docs for guidance on formal process for dealing with outstanding subscriptions, and chase.
CL reported that KS had recommended the Consortium to move to the SAGE accounting package to undertake all of its financial administration. A demo/training session with KS has been arranged for the end of January. Potential issues, such as how much work will be required to move existing records into the new system, and how this will fit into Support Team work-plan, will be discussed on the day. CL would like to make a decision as soon as possible, and would endeavour to have the new system in full operation running by time of next financial year (i.e. starting August 2011). CL advised that the Consortium should moving to internet transfers for most small payments, such as travel expenses. Action: VF to update expenses form.
5. Membership: Application from Lambeth Palace
JT and John Gilby (JG) reported that the visit to Lambeth Palace Library was very positive. The head of the library is very keen to build connections with other services and make the Palace collections more widely known. The visit confirmed that the library fulfils all the criteria required for M25 membership eligibility (involvement in HE-level research etc.), and that the representative had read and agreed to the M25 Rights and Responsibilities document. It is suggested that should Lambeth Palace’s membership be agreed before August 2011, the subscription for the remainder of 2010/11 year would be pro-rata. Subscription Band would be agreed once FTE staff numbers confirmed. The SG recommendation is to accept Lambeth Palace Library request for membership. SL will notify the Consortium via the Directors list and request members raise any objects by 28th January 2011. Action: SL to notify members.
6. cpd25 report:
Mary Nixon (MN) reported that the cpd25 Steering Group (cpd25 SG) had discussed the possibility to reconsider cpd25’s charging policy. It had been suggested that charges for non-members were raised to 150% of those for Consortium institutions, in order to continue to provide best value for money to members. The SG agreed this proposal in principle, and it will be taken to the AGM to approve.
7. Reports from working groups:
7.1 Digital Developments Working Group (DDWG)
JT reported that the last DDWG meeting was cancelled.
The Staff Room was launched softly at the M25 Networking Event in November, and an encouraging number of people signed up – though there has been little further engagement. More work is required to increase take up but also not lose the interest of staff who have already signed up. It was suggested that because there are already a number of forums/channels for staff to communicate with colleagues, the Staff Room should be promoted as an opportunity for users to engage with staff that they don’t already know – in similar roles for instance. The issues around institutional representatives/’champions’, user administration, etc. have not yet been resolved: this should be discussed at the forthcoming Planning Day. Action: SL/JT add Staff Room to Planning Day agenda.
JG reported that the InforM25 review is gradually progressing. The MIMAS visit to talk about COPAC was encouraging, with definite potential to work together in the future. The visit to EDINA in Scotland also went well – though there was less possibility for collaboration, mainly because of Suncat and its technical specifications. DDWG is currently arranging visits to systems librarians in three M25 member institutions, to find out what they think about M25 systems. JT asked about timescale for completion of review, in particular in view of the forthcoming departure of Web Projects Officer,. Action: JT to contact BA to discuss.
7.2. Marketing and Communications Working Group (MCWG):
Vicky Falconer (VF) reported that the last meeting had been cancelled due to staff absence and poor weather. The SG agreed that marketing the Consortium and its activities is of vital and increasing importance, but thought that the amount of work required exceeds that which the group can feasibly achieve in any given time. It was agreed that the current membership of the MCWG does not include enough staff with marketing expertise, and that perhaps the process of filling vacancies on the group should be reconsidered. Action: JT to liaise with interim Chair of MCWG, Pete Ryan, re MCWG membership and activities. Marketing/promotion to be on Planning day agenda.
8. Review of Risk Register:
The SG discussed the current risk register and noted updates/amendments to be made. Action: VF to update register and distribute to SG.
9. Review of directors contacts list:
The SG agreed that most of the list of contacts was up to date, with a couple of exceptions. Action: SL to investigate interim contact for King’s and forward to VF. It was agreed that VF should note any queries as they arise, and bring the list to SG meetings as required.
10. RLUK call for Journal Pricing Restraint; M25 Positioning:
The SG agreed to leave this item for now.
11. External funding opportunities:
JT reported that it had been decided not to lead a bid for the recent JISC call. However, MIMAS and John Rylands University Library, University of Manchester had submitted a bid in relation to the activity strand of the JISC call, i.e. with regard to making better use of user data. The M25 Consortium had been referred to in that bid as a possible source of data and consultation. The outcome of the bid was not yet known. There was also no news with regard to the London Higher shared services initiative, outcomes of which John Tuck had recently chased. Two other bids/projects in which the Consortium had involvement were a) a bid led by Robert Hall/Julie Howell/Nick Bevan relating to shared infrastructures, made to the Leadership Foundation and b) inclusion of four M25 libraries (University of Westminster, University of East London, University for the Creative Arts and Royal Holloway) in the SCONUL/JISC shared services electronic resource management initiative, seeking to identify and define a consortial/national approach to ERM. Action: JT to compile a short report on these.
12. NOWAL meeting report:
There was not sufficient time to cover this item.
There was not sufficient time to cover this item.
14. Conference Planning
The SG agreed to hold the Conference on the 15th April. SL outlined a few thematic ideas – including an event focused on making the most of things in a difficult financial climate, with a focus on collections, access and discovery, and developing staff. The SG agreed that a showcase of Lambeth Palace’s collections could be a good inclusion in the line-up. It was agreed that the theme and content of the Conference would be finalised at the January Planning Day. It was also agreed that a venue should be booked as soon as possible. Action: VF to follow up in initial suggestions for venues, and bring to Planning Day.
15. Dates of next meetings
The meeting on the 17th March 2011 will be held at University for the Creative Arts; the meeting on 8th July 2011 will be held at Royal Holloway, University of London.
Summary of Actions
2.1: SL to forward Annual Report to SCONUL list; VF and SL to draw up list of additional recipients to send the report to in January.
3.1.1: JT to get in touch with LSE regarding SG response to space charging proposal.
3.1.2: CL to model initial figures in relation to 3.1.1. above
4.1: CL/VF to check governance docs for guidance on formal process for dealing with outstanding subscriptions and chase.
4.2: VF to update expenses form.
5. SL/JG to finalise membership procedures and processes for Lambeth Palace. SL to notify members.
7.1.1: SL/JT to add Staff Room to Planning Day agenda.
7.1.2: JT to contact BA to discuss InforM25 review timescales.
7.2.1: JT to liaise with interim Chair of MCWG, Pete Ryan re MCWG membership and activities and to put on Planning day agenda.
8.1: VF to update Risk Register and distribute to SG.
9.1: SL to investigate interim contact for King’s and forward to VF.
11. JT to compile report on M25 involvement/role in wider projects, funding bids.